IT MIGHT come as a surprise to many but men also go through menopause.
Male menopause is said to affect about 24% of men who are over 40.
Experts use the term andropause, or late onset hypogonadism, to describe this condition in men.
A number of men experience physical changes in middle age due to declining hormonal levels.
Symptoms are irritability, weight gain, low sex drive and function, sleeping problems, depression, tiredness and strength loss. It may even include hot flushes.
“Not every man will experience this, but the symptoms are very real,” says Luigi Simone, MD, a family doctor at Scripps Clinic Encinitas in the US with a special focus on men’s health.
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“There’s a reason it’s called male menopause. It’s because it can produce many of the same symptoms as female menopause.”
Unlike with female menopause, research published by Britain’s National Health Service show that male testosterone levels will decline by 1-2% every year over the age of 40. This is a natural, normal process, with 18-year-olds typically showing testosterone levels exceeding 1 000 nanograms per decilitre, compared to 200 ng/dl in 80-year-old men.
If you are within the age range of andropause and suspect that you might have it, visit your doctor so you can have tests done and undergo treatment.